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Posts on Other Forums - The Salaat Forum / Re: A Woman's Awrah
« on: December 16, 2011, 06:43:00 AM »

by Joseph Islam  , On God's Earth, Thursday, December 15, 2011, 11:03 (4 hours, 38 minutes ago) @ Waqas

Brother Waqas,

Salamun Alaikum.

I am just about to embark on travel abroad, so please accept this as my last involvement on this thread until I return, God willing.

There is a clear expectation from the Quran that women will have their chest (24:31), arms and legs (24:60) covered by the wearing of a suitable garment when not in intimate company. At the time of revelation, a 'thobe' fulfilled such a requirement. In today's terms another garment may provide the same coverage.

In verse 24:60, we clearly note that an older woman is permitted to remove her 'thobe' without wanton display of her beauty. This cannot refer to her normal garments as if this were to be removed she would be left exposed.

Hence, there is an inherent expectation that younger women will continue to wear a garment / outer garment such as a 'thobe' that covers their chest, arms and legs up to their feet when they are not in intimate company. This is the classical definition and this is how a 'thobe' is understood today.

Verse 33:59 either supports 24:60 or introduces an edict. Either way, there is an expectation to wear an outer garment / suitable garment when not in intimate company.

As I have clearly argued in my article, a hijaab by definition in the Quran is a barrier / screen and is not a term used for coverage of the hair. However, one can argue that bedecking the hair (beautifying oneself to an extent which can become a cause of attraction) needs to be appreciated under the broad Arabic term 'zeenat'. This is indeed a subjective area and I remain non committal as I do not see any reason to define this when the Quran has not explicitly done so.


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